9 10 2013

I look in the mirror every morning even though I know it never brings me joy! To be honest, I don’t like what the reflection that stares back at me looks like at all. If I ever repeated the mantra of the old Snow White fairy tale where I would talk to the looking glass and ask it to tell me who the fairest one of all might be- I know it ain’t me babe! But that doesn’t mean that I wouldn’t give anything to have a full head of hair that caps a body that would be in tip top athletic shape highlighted by a face that would finally be free of the skin issues that I thought I would have been able to kiss goodbye when I abandoned puberty place for good! There are days that I wish I would have the courage to just skip this daily am ritual and go out and play as if I was blinded to my low level of self-esteem. But my earthly pride gets in the way and before I know it- the discouragement and depression twins have made themselves at home where they really have no business abiding!

You see, it really is only an outer problem. On the inside- where my heart thrives- I feel alive and aggressive- ready to reject passivity and dive head first into the latest adventure that God might have for me! I want to squeeze every ounce of the precious moments that I have to be alive on this earth. I want to dance in the streets and play in the rain and tell the world that I can’t stop praising God’s name! I want to run with the wind with the zeal of a child and sing at the top of my lungs! I miss the days when I actually was very likely to do all of these things and more. And then in 2006, my body began to betray me on a regular basis. It was almost like it was actually purposely warring against my spirit. And I am ashamed to confess that in the last 7 years since the physical ailments have begun their persistent assaults in an attempt to suffocate my outer tent- I have allowed my flesh to triumph over my inner soul and it has succeeded in keeping the real me imprisoned in what at times feels like a terrifying black hole of chaos and confusion.

Yet I press on with a hopeful faith only in the strength of the grace and truth of who God is. I have heard the Lord’s promises that his presence is sufficient no matter what my surroundings may be! I have seen with my own eyes his power show up miraculously and work through me when I had nothing in my human tank to offer him or others! It takes much more that the power of positive thinking! And we must be sobered from the lies that God always wants us healthy, happy and high strung! God wants us holy! And holiness happens as we survive the trials and tribulations that living brings to even those who love Jesus! There have been days that I have cried for hours for healing and deliverance and even though the unwanted silence from heaven can be deafening- the God sightings on earth have allowed me to make it through the rain with my song intact and my salvation rich and real and road tested!

I share all of this because we so often in Christian circles only hear the testimonies of how God has given us clear skin, straight A’s, jobs with big promotions, kids who never talk back and pets who showed up at our doorstep potty trained. It is time to get real or get lost! God is not about fine-tuning a charade! We aren’t called to fake it- but to face whatever our lot may be with a faith that has been forged through the fire! Every day I live, I smell the smoke on my soul. And yet God knows the way I take and when He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold. I may not be much to look at here on earth where it is all passing away, but wait till you see me in glory!

So I still start each day by looking in that stupid mirror. But the book of James reminds me to not merely listen to the word, and so deceive myself. I need to do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do. Simply put, I have given myself 4 M’s to live by every morning! When I look in the MIRROR in the morning- I now ask the MASTER to work on me from the inside out! I can do all I can to try to fix up the outside so I don’t scare women and children on the street- but I need God to do the inner MAKEOVER to make my soul shine! And when I allow God to do what he wants to do in me- I become the MASTERPIECE that he always created me to be and the same is true for you! MIRROR, MASTER, MAKEOVER, MASTERPIECE! It gives me a whole new eternal view even when the temporary look may be lacking what I long for! I know what God has begun in you and I will be brought to a victorious completion if we give him access to all of what we deal with- no matter what it might entail! Here’s looking at you Lord- no matter what I see in the mirror!

Let Pastor Rudy know what you think by writing him at pastorrudytlc@comcast.net



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